June 8th, 2012 | by AARON MESH News | Posted In: Cops and Courts, PDX News

Here's What Your Fleet Week Sailors Have Been Up To

Ask them about the pirates

steelbridgefleetweekThe USS William P. Lawrence and the Steel Bridge - Aaron Mesh
The military ships docked at the Waterfront yesterday afternoon for Fleet Week. And whether you're a bartender trying to make conversation with your midshipman patrons, or a hairy bear looking for a companion to "watch the dragon boat races," it's helpful to know where your sailors have been.

So we've leafed through the recent press clippings on four of the biggest ships in port.

USS Dewey: The San Diego-based guided-missile destroyer spent most of the past year deployed with the John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group to the western Pacific and Middle East. At least some of that time was spent in the Persian Gulf, aiding in the draw-down of U.S. troops from Iraq. The strike group then moved to  the Arabian Sea as leverage for the war in Afghanistan—where the Dewey's sister destroyer, the USS Kidd, rescued hostages from Somali pirates in January. See this report from a San Diego TV station:
In January, while supporting operations in Afghanistan, John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group forces thwarted an attempted pirate attack on a Bahamian-flagged cargo vessel and freed a group of Iranian mariners from the suspected pirates, Navy officials said.

"Our goal was safety and security, protecting the lives of those fishermen," said Cmdr. Jennifer L. Ellinger, commanding officer of the USS Kidd. "We were just happy to save lives and help people."

The strike group also conducted several exercises with partner countries in the western Pacific and made stops in Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines.
USS William P. Lawrence: The Navy's newest destroyer, it was only built three years ago, and we can't find evidence that it's been much of anywhere yet. It was commissioned in Mobile, Ala., last year and took the Panama Canal to San Diego.

USS Ingraham: Based in Everett, Wash., the frigate has been fighting the war on drugs. "The USS Ingraham returned to Everett," the Herald Business Journal reported last month, "after deployment to Latin American and Caribbean countries cooperating in efforts to combat trafficking in narcotics and other contraband."

HMCS Oriole: Canadians! They've been in Canada—the Oriole is the Royal Canadian Navy's sail training ship, and it just finished a refit last month in Victoria, B.C. It's certainly the only participant in Fleet Week that started as a private yacht.
 
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